Cherry Hill Dog Bite Claims Process

A dog bite claim is formulated when someone is bitten by a dog that is owned by someone else and they suffer an injury. These claims are often quite complex and require the assistance of a knowledgeable attorney.

If you have been injured by a dog due to another’s negligence and are hesitant about navigating the Cherry Hill dog bite claims process alone, it is important to hire an experienced Cherry Hill dog bite lawyer immediately to begin building a claim.

Initial Process

When filed, a Cherry Hill dog bite claim is made to the dog owner. That is often in the form of a letter to the owner and to their insurance company. The claim is tried to be resolved before litigation and before a person must appear in court.

If it is unable to be settled, a person would have to file a claim with the New Jersey Superior Court. That is done in the form of a complaint. A complaint gets filed in the appropriate county for the New Jersey Superior Court. The complaint will then be served upon the defendant, who is the owner of the dog, and that individual would answer the complaint. Then, litigation commences.

Requirements for Filing a Claim

In New Jersey, a person wants to make sure that they are filing their Cherry Hill dog bite claim within the appropriate statute of limitations. This is generally two years from the date of the accident. If the accident involves a minor, it is two years from their 18th birthday.

Once that complaint is filed, since New Jersey is a notice state, the requirements of the pleading and the complaint does not require a lot of detail. They simply have to put enough facts into the complaint that would give the defendant sufficient notice of the claim.

Once the complaint is filed, it has to be served upon the defendant. That can be served by anyone who is over the age of 18. A lot of times, people will use a sheriff or a process server. Once it is served, that defendant has a certain amount of time to answer the complaint and litigation will start as part of the Cherry Hill dog bite claims process.

Length of a Claim

A lot of times, a person will wait until their treatment has ended and they have a very good understanding of their residuals before filing a Cherry Hill dog bite claim. If there is going to be scarring, an individual wants to see how that scarring has ended up before filing a claim.

Once it is decided that there is going to be a claim filed in the superior court, the Cherry Hill dog bite claims process does not take very long. A person has to draft the complaint, serve it, and give the opportunity to the defendant, dog owner, and their insurance company to try to settle the claim prior to putting the case into litigation.

After Processing

After the complaint is filed and served on the defendant, they answer the complaint. Once they answer the complaint, discovery begins. In the discovery process, one of the first things done is interrogatories, which is essentially just written questions. The plaintiff has to answer those.

Then, the case would proceed to depositions where the injured party would answer questions and testimony by the other person’s attorney. The defendant would have to do the same thing, whereas the plaintiff’s lawyer will ask them a bunch of questions about the dog’s history and about the incident that occurred.

After that, the defendant may request that the plaintiff is examined by one of their doctors to determine the full extent of the injuries based on the defendant’s doctor’s analysis. If the case still cannot settle, it goes to an arbitration, which is mandated by the court. It is not binding. After the arbitration, the case will be scheduled for trial. It is very rare that most cases resolve before trial, but that is generally the Cherry Hill dog bite claims process.